Advice / Enquiries
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Post 55
Recent Post from one of our readers - 01/02/2017
Name: Debbie Bell
email address: deborah.bell16@btinternet.com - Click here
Message:
Scenery Painting

Hi!
I have recently been involved in scenery painting with our local Am Dram group here in East Yorkshire. My friend and I ( we are amateur artists) think we made a decent job of it, but would like to undertake a course to improve, if one exists for the likes of us!
Regards,
Debbie

Peter's response:

Hi Debbie,

I'm afraid you've stumped me, I don't know of any such courses. Iíll place an entry for you in the #Advice section of the www.dramagroups.com website and on our Facebook, Google+ and Twitter pages and ask people to contact you directly if they can help.

I hope you get some good advice. Do let me know how you get on.

Best Regards,

Peter

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Post 54
Recent Post from one of our readers - 02/05/2016
Name: Lorna Baillie
email address: durhamdalesfopa@gmail.com - Click here
Message:
SUSPICIOUS CONTACT
I wondered if anyone else has been receiving similar emails to the following:-

ďI came across your email address at (http://www.dramagroups.com/) and I would so much like us to be friends. I have something important to discuss with you.

Cheers.Ē?


I have received more than one, and identical to the above, from apparently different people.
Thank you.
Kind regards,
Lorna Baillie
Director
Durham Dales Festival of Performing Arts

Peter's response:

Hi Lorna,
Iím sorry you have been bothered with spam email, please rest assured that it is nothing to do with www.dramagroups.com. We would not email such a thing to you and would not / have not released email addresses to anyone. The only way that these people could have picked up your email address is by trawling the www.dramagroups.com website. If you would like me to remove your email address from our website just let me know and Iíll take it down.

It is unfortunate that people abuse the email system in this way as it is the easiest way for genuine people to get in touch if they do not use social media.

Iíll put your comments up in our #Advice section along with my reply and ask our visitors for comments.

Best Regards,

Peter

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Post 53
Recent Post from one of our readers - 19/04/2016
Name: Kay Morland
email address: kay.morland@hotmail.com - Click here
Message:
Scenery for Pantomimes
Hello Drama Groups

My name is Kay and I am a set designer. With many years experience in the industry I am about to start out on my own, and I am doing some market research. I have a history acting in Amateur Dramatic groups and I have an idea that could help groups all around the country.

So my idea is this...


I would like to make a panto set, the set will consist of all the standard scenes, the village scene, the forest scene, castle interior and exterior etc, whatever your company needs I can provide.
The set will be made of an extremely light weight material and of course abide by all of the current scenic health and safety standards. The idea is that the entire set can fold down and fit easily into the back of an ordinary car. It will be easy to reconstruct the other end and also very versatile e.g. double sided flats.
I understand that a lot of Am Dram groups have a very extensive back stage support network and often produce their own scenery, certainly if the group has a storage facility to keep and recycle sets from other shows. However a lot of groups do not have the luxury of storage, or people who are willing to build and construct large items in their own homes, no matter how keen they may be to make their own sets, it is not always possible.
I want to encourage artistic people in groups to get involved and so there can be personalised elements to all of my sets that can be made and painted by members of the group. Such as the sign on the Inn or the name of Twankys laundrette or even a bush shaped like Shirley Bassy . I certainly do not want any local pantomime to loose its personal touch, I only want to take some of stress out of producing a large show, giving even the smallest group the opportunity to put on a show that is of a beautiful and professional standard.
For the hire of an entire set, which would include 4 large flats of your choice of decoration, each of which would be double sided giving your group 8 elements to use in any why you need (the sides are interchangeable) the hire cost would be £600 for 3 weeks (to cover your tech and dress and 2 weekends of performances) and you would need to collect the set from my workshop Bassingbourn near to Royston in Hertfordshire. the set can be delivered but at an appropriate cost to your location.
What I want to know from you is:
ē Do you think it's a good idea?
ē Is it something that you think your group would be interested in hiring?
ē what could I do to make the idea better for Your group?
ē have I got the price right? would it be in keeping with your scenic budget for your pantos?
I would really welcome any input that you have. It is very hard to keep the scenic industry going especially when there is such a large amount of people in the industry willing to work for free. I know so many extremely talented people who cannot get work because of this and end up leaving the industry for financial reasons. I want talented artists to have the opportunity to reach their potentials and develop their skills. I'm really hoping that you will be able to give me some feedback that helps me so that I can help others.

Kind Regards
Kay Morland

PS. Here are some photos of my past work, not all for panto, I make props as well. The Westie is a prop who pees on the audience he is also available for hire ?

Peter's response:

Hi Kay,
Thanks for your email, Iíve been pondering how to respond.

I think the best thing would be for me to place your email in our #Advice section asking people to contact you directly with their thoughts.

Once you have completed your research and are ready to start your business contact me again and we can arrange a space for you in our #PropSwap section where you will be able to advertise your services. There will be no charge all I ask is that you place a link to www.dramagroups.com on your own website and that you Like and Follow us on social media.

Best Wishes

Peter

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Post 52
Recent Post from one of our readers - 05/04/2016
Name: Matthew Smith
email address: Matthew@peterborougharena.com - Click here
Message:
Hello,

I sit on the committee of our local am dram society and we were wondering what other societies did for a bit of press? Or what sources do people use to promote themselves? Do people find social media works? We utilise this for our pantomimes with our own hashtag and have recently ventured into twitter and Instagram too. Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

Kindest Regards,

Matthew Smith BSc.

Peter's response:

Hi Matthew,

An interesting subject and one which vexes the mind of most amateur and professional theatre groups I would imagine. Certainly in my own group we have frequent discussions about how we can make our advertising budget go further and produce more results, as in bigger audiences.

The www.dramagroups.com website is my attempt to help amateur groups publicise themselves and their events. Drama Groups has a website and we use social media to try to drive audience to that website. There are many other websites like ours that try to operate in the same manner.

Certainly it seems to me that amateur groups have to operate in a professional manner when it comes to advertising themselves and their events. Itís no longer enough to rely on previous audiences or posting flyers on the notice boards of local shops as we all used to do. These days we all have to get technical and have a presence on the web and in social media with professional advertising flyers, posters, video and sound clips. We have to engage with our audience and compete with the million and one other things there is on offer to fill their leisure time.

I will place your email in our #Advice section and I hope others will see it and add their comments. I for one will be very interested to see the replies.

Best Wishes

Peter

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Post 51
Recent Post from one of our readers - 10/03/2016
Name: Aisling Swift
email address: via Facebook
Message:
Hello, I am after a bit of advice. I have been asked to direct a 10 minute excerpt from Bouncers and one from Shakers for a variety show. And just not sure on which scenes would be best as stand alone performances. Any help/suggestions greatly received.

Peter's response:

Hi Aisling,
Not sure I can help you personally as I don't have a great deal of exposure to either of these plays. I'll put your request up on www.dramagroups.com in the #Advice section and ask people to contact you directly via FB with any suggestions.
Hope it all works out do let me know how you get on.
Best Wishes

Peter

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Post 50
Recent Post from one of our readers - 28/02/2016
Name: Jordan Barnes
email address: via Facebook
Message:
Hello I'm after some advice please, i am directing a show this year with some amazing young children but can't find any musicals we cn afford to perform? is it possible to get show rights to a show for under £100?

Peter's response:

Hi Jordan,
I'm not sure that I know the answer to that question. Normally licences are issued in respect of the number of performances, the size of the audience and the ticket price. There are some authors who if you approach them directly are happy to offer scripts/scores free of royalty just to get their 'baby' in front of an audience and to get some free publicity. I'll post your question on the www.dramagroups.com #Advice column and ask people to contact you directly if they can help. In the meantime why not have a look at our #Scripts section, there are some authors offering royalty free scripts listed there.

Best Wishes,

Peter

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Post 49
Recent Post from one of our readers - 19/01/2016
Name: Matthew Day
email address: mattamday@hotmail.com - Click here
Message:
Can anyone recommend a good media player to use for stage productions please? I need something for a musical next week, but I'm not happy with the regular media players. I want something where I can organise a playlist, and play individual tracks that will stop playing when the track ends (and not automatically play the next track), as well as play multiple tracks at the same time (background FX etc.), easily.
Thanks,
Matt.


Peter's response:

Hi Matthew,
I donít know of a media player specifically for stage productions, weíve discussed this at my own group but so far come up with nothing. Iíve placed an entry for you in the #Advice section of the www.dramagroups.com website. I hope you get some good advice. Do let me know how you get on.

Best Wishes,

Peter

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Pryce's Response 03/03/2016
Hi there
I know this is too late for your performance, but I use a music/media player on my windows laptop and it is absolutely fantastic!. I have researched over 20 of these players and this one is far way better than any other in my opinion. It is written by an Australian guy who was/is a Sound-Guy as a Job.
The software is completely free (although I have dropped him a fiver). There is no/little support for his software as he has stopped writing amendments to it but it is solid as a rock. I wanted a display that had could have a black background and large green letters with no or very little dependency on a mouse and this s/w does it beautifully. I use a separate keypad for my laptop and it works great. You do all the setup of the sound/music files first, with separate track option, volume levels, pans, speed, start positions, loops etc for EACH track. Once you have played a track the software will position itself for the next and waits for you to press enter for the next. You can even get really clever and get it to do clever stuff with cueing for other tracks. It is called MULTIPLAY and here is his website where you can download it. www.da-share.com/software/multiplay/
I have used it now for about ten years or so and I tell everybody about it as it is sooooo good.
Please have a go with it I am sure you will love it for your next performance.
If you have a problem with it please drop me a line I will help out if you wish.
Kind regards
Best of Luck
P.J. (Sound & Light guy for Minshull Amateur Dramatic Group) www.MADGroup.co
PJ pj@mm.st


 

Post 48
Recent Post from one of our readers - 06/12/2015
Name: Terry Ronald Francis
Contact: Facebook
Message:
In Somerset, amateur pantomines are entered into the annual Cinderella Awards. I'm just wondering if there is a Dorset equivalent (can't seem to find one on the internet) as a friend of mine wants to enter her production of "Aladdin" (December 21/22 at Digby Hall, Sherborne - script by yours truly) into such a competition. But, alas, neither of us have contact details for such an organisation. Can anyone here be of assistance?


Peter's response:

Hi Terry,
I'm sorry, I don't know of a Dorset equivalent. I'll put your post up in the #Advice section of www.dramagroups.com and ask people to contact you if they know of such an event.

Peter

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Post 47
Recent Post from one of our readers - 19/11/2015
Name: Emma Albrow
email address: EAlbrow@ringmeracademy.org - Click here
Message:
Hello,

Iím a beauty therapist with 16 yearsí experience and would love to volunteer to help. I currently work at Ringmer College teaching level 1. I would love to get involved myself and maybe the students. any advice on how to do this?

Kind Regards
Emma Albrow


Peter's response:

Hi Emma,
Wow thatís an offer Iím sure most groups would love to take you up on. I have two suggestions:
- Take a look at the #Groups section of www.dramagroups.com for groups in your area and make contact with them directly offering your services. There usually are contact details for each group and a website and social media details, if in doubt click on the group name or logo and itíll take directly to their website. Iím sure most if not all groups would welcome some help. I know mine would but Iím afraid youíre too far away to commute.
- I could place your query in the #Advice section of www.dramagroups.com and ask groups to contact you directly if they would be interested in having you help them out.
- Or we could do both things Ė might be more successful that way.

I need to know how people should contact you Ė via email at this address or phone number? Let me know how you would like to go forward.

Best Wishes,

Peter

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Emma's Response 20/11/2015
Hello Peter,

Thank you for your email. Yes letís try both out ? people can contact me through this email. Iíll have a look at the link you provided and email some of the groups. Be lovely if you could write in the advice section for me.

Thank you very much
Emma

 

Post 46
Recent Post from one of our readers - 04/06/2015
Name: Boglarka Omosomwan
email address: boczy88@gmail.com - Click here
Message:
My name is Boglarka Omosomwan, I am a qualified social scientist from Hungary. At the moment I am volunteering as a workshop assistant with the Me1 organization in Manchester. I am supporting youth people age between 11-25. In the University I had two semester drama therapy lessons and I found it very interested and useful. I studied a lot about drama therapy games but actually I never have a chance see how it works in the life. I want to use some drama therapy games during my sessions to help young people to build self-esteem, self-confidence, give them problem or conflict solving skills. I believe drama therapy can be useful to help young people in personal development. I would be happy to get involved a bit in drama therapies and be a volunteer to improve my knowledge. Are you using drama therapy in the drama theater supporting young people in that way?? Do you know any theater in Manchester who is doing that? it would be a big help for me.
I hope to hear from you soon.

Kind Regards
Boglarka Omosomwan


Peter's response:

Hi Boglarka,
www.dramagroups.com is simply a website that allows groups to promote themselves and their events, etc. As such I am not in a position to offer you help directly. What I can do is place your information in the #Advice section of the www.dramagroups.com website asking people to contact you directly. I hope you get a good response.

Best Wishes,

Peter

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Post 45
Recent Post from one of our readers - 25/02/2015
Name: Denise McCormick
email address: Missyy324@aol.com - Click here
Message:
Hi Everyone !
I have a cute little story/play for pre-teen girls. I would love to see the story on stage. The story is to help girls who are being bullied. Any ideas on how I can get it to the stage appreciated.
Thank you


Peter's response:

Hi Denise, If you take a look at 'Post 2' in the Advice section of www.dramagroups.com you will find some very interesting information from an existing author on how to go about getting your play published. Do take a look I'm sure you will find it helpful. Peter
Best of luck, let me know how you get on.

Peter

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Post 44
Recent Post from one of our readers - 19/01/2015
Name: Jamie Whitfield
email address: crossbabe74@gmail.com - Click here
Message:
Acting interests
Hi my name is Jamie Whitfield and I'm very interested in taking acting lessons and very keen on learning more as the days go by I believe more and more this is what I really want out of life. I'm an emotional person who does belive can bring a lot of enthusiasm and I think emotions are a huge role in acting I would love to learn more I'm in telford I'm 25 and have a admire for television series and films and would love to try a new life experience I do hope you can give me more knowledge of this or help me to follow the right path thanks for reading sincerely Jamie whitfield


Peter's response:

Thank you for your email, which I read with interest. The Drama Groups website is a portal for amateur groups and acting schools to advertise themselves and their events, etc. The emphasis here is on amateur not professional so I can not give you any advice about how to become a professional actor other than to say that very many professional actors today started their careers in amateur groups.
I suggest you take a look at the Groups section of the www.dramagroups.com website and check the groups in your County/Region. There will be groups and societies listed with contact details. If in doubt click on the group name or logo and that will take you directly to the groupís own website. All amdram groups are always happy to receive new members and Iím sure youíll have no difficulty in finding a group in your own area.
I shall place your email and my response in the Advice section of the Drama Groups website in the hope that someone with more knowledge than myself will be able to advise you better than I.
Best of luck, let me know how you get on.

Peter

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Virginia Dimitriou ginnymiff@gmail.com Responded 15/12/2016
Jamie the advice I can give you is to find a LAMDA teacher and start taking the Grades. You will be taught how to recite Shakespeare, poetry, improvisation, mime, etc .
I went through the Grades in both Guildhall and Lamda exams finally gaining the Gold Medal and A Teaching Diploma.
To have good sound voice production is vital . At the same time join a group and learn the ropes of acting with fellow actors.
Good luck.

 

Post 43
Recent Post from one of our readers - 19/01/2015
Name: Lucy Harrison
email address: https://www.facebook.com/lucy.harrison.501
Message:
PROPS ADVICE!
Hi, I'm designing for a production of Dracula in March and this is a bit random but I was thinking back projecting onto some victorian hospital screens could look really cool so I was wondering if anybody had any insight into where I could get some? We're based in Liverpool so the screens would have to be able to be dismantled to transport.


Peter's response:

Hi Lucy, I'm afraid I don't have any direct knowledge of how to achieve this effect. I'll place an entry in the #Advice section of www.dramagroups.com and ask people to contact you directly
Best of luck, let me know how you get on.

Peter

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